As you regrettably realize the inevitable that you no longer ‘live, laugh, love’ with such fervor and you must dismantle your iteration of the phrase’s decorative offspring from your kitchen wall, the very literal gap that remains can be filled in a couple of ways. Okay so there’s the one I talked about last time where you go and start collecting art, so that’s option number one. Your second option here is: well actually, I’ll just leave this one totally open to you and any personal ideas you may have about filling the wall space. But option number three is truly a great option; in this instance you make your own dang art.
Right, so you aren’t an artist or artistically inclined or whatever, which is exactly why you don’t already have personalized homemade wallpaper, but this is actually fine. The reason this is very fine is because there are a lot of places you can go where someone will essentially just show you how to make art, then you’ll just do it, and then you’ll have art. I mean it probably won’t be a Monet, but like lets be honest, would a Monet even look good with your urban-chic décor? Haha just kidding, of course it would, but whatever moving on.
So let’s talk about some more options here people. Now that you’ve definitely decided to make your own art you’re all like “Where? How? What kind?” here are some of your choices in Toronto:
Sorry should have warned you to be sitting for that one. That’s right, can you even believe it? These institutions offer more than just a way to kill an afternoon with the people you thought you used to like visiting from out of town! Okay, that was just a joke, I actually like these places for other reasons —I’m sorry.
For example, try a class at the AGO. Just try. They have them morning, noon, & night and offer a bunch of different skills at different levels. Very fun, very neat, very much tapping into your urban-lifestyle resources. Painting, drawing, photography, or like just say frick it all and do some yoga? I don’t know.
Oh wait, you want something a little more niche but still à-la-public sphere? Then try the Gardiner Museum. They mean business here and are really just all clay all the time! You could make a decorative plate wall hanging, I mean, I won’t tell you what to make but you could make that.
UNIVERSITIES / COLLEGES
So that’s all fine and dandy but maybe you fancy yourself more of a learned scholar. Maybe you’re a learned scholar who also hopes to hang around with a bunch of local youth who know the ins and the outs of this booming metropolis we call home? Great, that’s fine.
First try OCADU (the ‘U’ is silent). So OCADU offers a lot of different stuff through their Continuing Studies programs. It’s sort of hard to summarize in a brief but quip manner so maybe I’ll just let you go to the website to peruse on your own. Basically in these classes you’ll get to go back to school but only once a week and without any of the homework and your mom can’t even say nothing about it!
Perhaps you’re exclusively looking to explore abstraction in acrylics? I thought so. So opt for the Toronto School of Art where there are a lot of more specific skill-based classes. Some are even targeted at tweens (my personal favourite age category), so if you happen to fit this demographic I guess check those out.
This grouping is a bit loose in it’s very nature but I shall throw caution to the wind and firmly establish it as a unified one. Mostly what I’m getting at are classes held at either more private studios or spaces.
Somewhere like Open Studio is a great non-profit artist run space that focuses on the preservation and promotion of contemporary fine art prints, but they also offer some classes in various print making techniques. So this space unlike an institution will be a bit more intimate, but also personalized as a result!
If you’re still feeling this is a bit structured my last ditch effort is to point out the amazing privately owned spaces that host community workshops run in a nature that feels more like skill share than a class. Likely General often runs workshops and while a lot of them would not leave you with anything close to art for your wall some of them will, so there’s that to try. The Paper Place offers weekly crafting afternoons. These are all options, there are surely many more.
And related but unrelated is Shari Orenstein’s Conversations from the Toronto Art World class, which is perfect for inspo and learning what is hip and trending and current in art. I don’t mean to encourage you to refabricate someone else’s artwork but maybe if you like it you can think about and take some snaps of the mediums, materials, and colours they use.
Cool, so now you did it and maybe you’ve painted something other than a starkly contrasted sunset scene for your kitchen, except it’s distressing because now that you’re so talented you’re full blown living, laughing, and loving again but you already tossed your decorative calligraphy art.